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Entries in Meatless (34)


Quinoa Cakes with Poached Eggs

Quinoa cakes

Another month has come and gone, and that means it's time for another Secret Recipe Club reveal day! This month, I was assigned to Fran's Favs, written by Fran, of course, who describes herself an "Italian Foodie" who seems to be winning the contest of who can collect the most cookbooks (she has over 300)! A mother of 4 grown children, Fran seems to have one of the coolest jobs around; she works with flavor scientists and technologists who develop flavors for food companies! If that isn't the best fit for a food blogger, I don't know what is! Anyway, as soon as I got the assignment this month, I went right to her blog and read it from beginning to end, just as I always do. I found many different recipes that I thought sounded great, but this one stuck out the most. Since Joel and I have been wanting to incorporate different grains into our diet, I figured it was a sign to give quinoa a try (again). See, me and quinoa got off to a rocky start. The first time I made it a few years ago, it was super mushy and kind of gross. The next time I made it a few months ago, it burned and stuck to the bottom of the pan, forcing us to go out for dinner. The third time, I made Joel do it, and I am convinced it wasn't cooked quite well enough because it was slightly crunchy. So, fourth time's a charm? Yes, it was! I cooked the quinoa according to package directions using chicken broth (I know that doesn't make it vegetarian, but you can substitute water or vegetable broth) and it turned out perfectly! I am officially a quinoa lover. After mixing these patties and pan frying them, the first batch came out perfectly. They had such a great flavor, and with the egg on top, it gave the quinoa patties a richness when the yolk broke. I enjoyed how quickly this meal came together, and how simple, yet delicious, it was! Thank you for sharing, Fran! 

2 cups cooked Quinoa, cooled to room temperature
2 Eggs, beaten
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/3 cup Chives or Scallions, minced (I didn't have any, but I subbed parsley)
2 Shallots, finely chopped (I omitted)
1/3 cup Parmesan Cheese, grated
3 Garlic Cloves, minced
1/2 cup Bread Crumbs, plus more if needed
Olive Oil, for frying (I used vegetable oil)

For Serving:
Shaved Parmesan
6 Poached Eggs (one for each patty)
Salt and Pepper, to taste 

In a medium bowl, combine the quinoa, eggs, salt, chives, shallots, parmesan, and garlic. Stir to blend. Mix in the bread crumbs and stir gently until evenly incorporated. Form the mixture into six evenly sized patties, about 3-4 inches in diameter. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and swirl to coat. Add the patties to the pan so that they are not touching (it is best to do this in batches). Cook for about 4 minutes, or until the first side is lightly browned. Carefully flip the patties with a spatula and cook the second side until it is golden brown, about 3-4 more minutes. Repeat with remaining patties, using additional oil if needed. 

To serve patties, top with shaved parmesan, a poached egg, and salt and pepper.

SOURCE: Fran's Favs



Vegetarian Black Bean Chili

Black bean chili

We are forever on a quest to find the best chili. I'm pretty sure that every time we've had chili over the past 3 years, Joel and I have tried a different recipe; meaty chilis, bean-filled chilis, vegetable chilis, extra thick chilis, watery chilis, and chilis made with the help of a powdered mix or store-bought sauces, and still, nothing has really hit the spot. While we still have yet to find "the best", this black bean chili is delicious. The best part is that it only takes about a half an hour from the time it starts until the time it is in a bowl on the table. That has to win some points for quick, winter, weeknight meal!

1/4 cup Olive Oil (I used a little less)
2 cups Onion, chopped
2 Red Bell Peppers, chopped
6 Garlic Cloves, minced 
2 tablespoons Chili Powder (I only used 1 tablespoon)
2 teaspoons Dried Oregano
1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons Cumin
3 (15-ounce) cans Black Beans
1 (16-ounce) can Tomato Sauce
1/2 cup Water (I swished it around the tomato sauce can to get every last drop) 

Heat the oil in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onions, peppers, and garlic and cook until softened, about 10 minutes. Add the chili powder, oregano, cayenne, and cumin and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the black beans, sauce, and water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the flavors meld, stirring occasionally, about 15 minutes. Ladle chili into bowls and garnish with sour cream, cilantro, and shredded cheese. 

SOURCE: Bon Appetit, September 2004 via epicurious


Eggplant Cannelloni

Eggplant cannelloni

One of my favorite local restaurants has the best stuffed eggplant on their menu. Of course, it is filled with cheese, deep fried, and covered with even more cheese. While that is normally my kind of meal, I knew it was out of the question to recreate it in that way at home. Instead, I found a recipe that, while different, has the same concept: cheese inside eggplant, rolled up and served with sauce. In this recipe, broiling the eggplant slices rather than coating them in breadcrumbs and deep frying them saves on calories. While typical stuffed eggplant recipes have some sort of ricotta blend inside, this one has a mixture of tangy goat cheese, salty olives, and fresh parsley, which really makes this recipe stand out. This is yet another quick weeknight meal that is both healthy and delicious!

For the Sauce:
1 teaspoon Olive Oil
2 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 can (28 ounces) Crushed Tomatoes
1 Bay Leaf
1 teaspoon Oregano
Salt & Pepper, to taste

Heat the olive oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté until golden. Add the tomatoes, salt, pepper, oregano, and bay leaf. Lower the temperature, stir, and simmer for about 15 minutes.  

For the Eggplant:
2 medium Eggplants, cut lengthwise into 1/2 inch slices
Olive Oil
4 ounces Goat Cheese
4 Kalamata Olives, pitted and minced
1 teaspoon Capers, chopped (I omitted)
2 tablespoons Parsley, chopped

Coat the eggplant slices in olive oil (or cooking spray) and broil on a baking sheet until golden brown on both sides, about 10-15 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the goat cheese, olives, capers, and 1 tablespoon of the parsley in a bowl. When the eggplants have been browned, remove them from the broiler. Place about 1 tablespoon of the cheese filling at the end of each eggplant slice; roll up.

Spread sauce along the bottom of a 9x13 inch glass baking dish. Lay the rolled eggplant seam side down in the dish and bake at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes. Top with the remaining sauce and garnish with remaining parsley.

SOURCES: Sauce-adapted from Skinnytaste, Eggplant-adapted from Shape


Dragon Noodles

Dragon noodles

In an effort to continue with the theme of eating healthier in the new year, we made this noodle dish for dinner tonight. It took all of about 10 minutes to throw together and it was comprised of ingredients I almost always have on hand. We are fans of spicy dishes in this house, and let me tell you, this definitely had a kick. As I write this, my mouth is still burning, and it has been at least 30 minutes since I took my last bite! Even Joel made a comment about the spice, and that says a lot because the guy can handle spicy! If you like quick, cheap, spicy dishes, this is the one for you.

1 package (8 ounces) Lo Mein Noodles
2 tablespoons Butter
1/2 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
2 Eggs
2 tablespoons Brown Sugar
2 tablespoons Soy Sauce
2 tablespoons Sriracha
1 handful Cilantro (I omitted)
1 Scallion, sliced

Cook the noodles according to package directions. In the meantime, stir together the brown sugar, soy sauce, and sriracha in a small bowl. In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Add the red pepper flakes as the butter melts. Whisk the eggs in a separate bowl, then add them to the melted butter and stir until cooked through. Remove the egg from the heat and set aside. When the noodles are tender, drain them and add them to the skillet with the egg. Top with the sauce. Turn the heat on low and mix until all the noodles are well coated with the sauce. Sprinkle the scallions and cilantro over the top and serve. 

SOURCE: Budget Bytes


Spiced Black Bean, Grilled Avocado, and Goat Cheese Tacos

Black bean vocado goat cheese tacos

Oh, hi! Did you miss me? Joel and I took a little vacation to the beautiful coastal New England cities of Portsmouth, New Hampshire and Portland, Maine. Even though we had to drive 9 hours to get there, both were wonderful cities to relax and enjoy some down-time in. We stayed at two pretty awesome hotels while there, and did some touristy things like taking a boat cruise and learning about the colonial history of the city. Of course, as with most vacations, we also ate some amazing food! I quickly learned that there are very few things better than enjoying a fresh lobster roll while sitting on an outdoor patio overlooking the water and drinking a great local beer! However, as delicious as all of the food and beer were, eating out three meals a day for 4 days made us feel a bit pudgy! Now that we are home, we want to make a solid effort to eat at home more often, and to eat a bit lighter. These tacos were the perfect way to transition back into home cooking. They have very few ingredients and take very little time to put together, but they have a big flavor! We paired these tacos with a fresh corn salad (recipe to come) and both found one taco to be more than enough to satisfy our hunger. 

1 tablespoon Coriander Seeds
1/2 tablespoon Cumin Seeds
Pinch Dried Pepper Flakes
1/2 cup Black Beans, with liquids
1 Avocado
1 teaspoon Olive Oil
Juice and Zest from 1/2 Lime
2 teaspoons Honey (I used agave nectar)
1/4 cup Goat Cheese
4 Corn or Flour Tortillas

In a dry skillet over medium-low heat, toast the coriander and cumin seeds for 2-3 minutes, until they are fragrant and beginning to brown. Remove from the heat and grind the seeds and the dried pepper flakes with a mortar and pestle or in a spice grinder. Return the spices to the skillet and add the black beans and liquids. Heat over medium-low heat and let cook until the liquids have cooked out, between 5-10 minutes. Cut the avocado in half and brush with the olive oil. Place the cut side down on a preheated grill and cook until slightly charred. Remove and carefully slice the avocado out of the skin. In a small bowl, whisk together the lime juice and zest along with the honey. To assemble the tacos, place 1/4 cup of the black bean mixture in the center of the tortilla, layer avocado and goat cheese on top. Drizzle the lime-honey mixture over the filling and serve.

SOURCE: Naturally Ella